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Mikel Arteta confirms injury blow for Martin Odegaard ahead of Bayern Munich clash

LONDON, ENGLAND - APRIL 09: Martin Odegaard of Arsenal in action during the UEFA Champions League quarter-final first leg match between Arsenal FC and FC Bayern München at Emirates Stadium on April 09, 2024 in London, England. (Photo by Mike Hewitt/Getty Images) (Photo by Mike Hewitt/Getty Images)

Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta has provided a worrying update on Martin Odegaard ahead of the second leg of the Champions League quarter-final against Bayern Munich on Wednesday.

The Gunners suffered their first Premier League defeat of the calendar year on Sunday. They were second-best against Aston Villa after the break and eventually lost 2-0 at the Emirates Stadium.

Odegaard was surprisingly substituted in the 79th minute when the scores were level at 0-0. It was initially deemed as a tactical measure from Arteta, but the Spaniard has now revealed the reason.

Speaking to Sky Sports, the Gunners head coach said that the club captain had been struggling with a leg issue and he had to be taken off as a result.

He said (via BBC Sport): “He had a leg issue, that’s why [he was taken off].”

The €35 million signing has been a key player for the Gunners this season and he has already registered 10 goals and seven assists from 41 appearances.

He has stepped up his performances in the back end of the campaign and has been creating plenty of chances for his teammates from the number 10 role.

It is left to be seen whether he will be fit for the second leg of the Champions League final.

Arsenal played out a 2-2 draw against Bayern in the first leg at the Emirates Stadium last week. They now face a huge challenge on their hands in Munich.

The club have suffered 5-1 defeats in the previous two outings to the Allianz Arena and Odegaard’s absence from the XI would be a huge blow for them.

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